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Netflix announces $120M donation to HBCUs

Netflix (Photo credit: Shutterstock / Twin Design)

As many companies have made blanket statements about their views on racial inequality, police brutality, and the Black Lives Matter movement following the killing of George Floyd and numerous protests around the country, Netflix has made its support very clear.

The entertainment company that was among the first to speak out is now taking its commitment to the next level.

Netflix CEO Reed Hastings, and his wife Patty Quillin, announced on Wednesday that they are donating $120 million to historically Black colleges and universities HBCUs.

The gift is the largest ever contribution by an individual in support of scholarships at HBCUs. The donation will be equally divided into three parts so that $40 million will go to Morehouse College, $40 million to Spelman College, and $40 million to the UNCF.

“We’ve supported these three extraordinary institutions for the last few years because we believe that investing in the education of Black youth is one of the best ways to invest in America’s future,” Hastings and Quillin said. “Both of us had the privilege of a great education and we want to help more students — in particular students of color — get the same start in life.”
Spelman will use its donation to fund a scholarship named for Spelman alumna Dovey Johnson Roundtree. Annually the gift will provide 20 talented, first-year students with full scholarships, which include tuition, and room and board.
The President of Spelman personally thanked the Hastings.
“This historic gift in response to the historic moment we’re experiencing comes from two people who care deeply about education, equity, and the future of our country. We are enormously grateful for this affirmation of the importance of the work that HBCUs do to educate the next generation of Black leaders,” said Mary Schmidt Campbell, Ph.D., president of Spelman.
The president of Morehouse College also thanked them with a video message.
“This historic $40 million gift from Patty Quillin and Reed Hastings is an affirmation of the work that we are doing at Morehouse College to produce leaders who are equipped to affect change in their professions, communities, the nation, and the world,” said David A. Thomas, President of Morehouse College.

The all-male college will use the donation to create the Dr. Michael L. Lomax Student Success Scholarship, named after the UNCF chief executive and 1968 Morehouse graduate. The Student Success Program is comprised of scholarships and evidence-based research that will inform financial literacy programs and the impact of debt on household budgets.

Netflix has also established a Black Lives Matter category on the platform to make finding relevant shows and movies more accessible. There you can find “Dear White People,” Ava DuVernay’s 13th, Malcolm X and more.